AskBoA: Bradford on Avon wall

A TEAM of volunteers in Bradford on Avon are appealing for more helpers to go at it hammer and tong to repair a historic stone wall by the Kennet & Avon Canal.

The volunteers, flanked by the Canal & River Trust and a professional stonemason, have picked up where they left off last year by rebuilding a stretch of the collapsed Hen’s Orchard Wall.

25m of the wall has been restored with another 30m to go and the group has been trained in a variety of techniques, including line mortaring and stone dressing.

David Viner, heritage advisor at the Canal & River Trust, said:

“What is so impressive about this project is the high standard to which the repairs have been completed – it is an amazing effort from the volunteers, who have maintained such a high level of attention to detail throughout the whole thing. The wall is an important part of Bradford’s industrial heritage, and once completed will not only protect the towpath but also really improve the setting of Hen’s Orchard and the historic Tithe Barn. Put simply, we would not be able to do this kind of project without the help of the volunteers, who are incredibly dedicated and should be hugely proud of what they have achieved so far.”

Derrick Hunt, lead volunteer on the project, said:

“We are really pleased with the progress we’ve made so far, and are there’s always room for more people to get involved. We take on a wide range of practical tasks along the canal, so we are looking for people with an interest in learning new skills as well as those who can bring professional experience to the table. We are also keen to hear from anyone who could donate stone to the project.”

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